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Mequon neighbors object to proposed subdivision along Milwaukee River

Sept. 13, 2011

Mequon - Residents living near a proposed new subdivision on Freistadt Road will get another chance in October when the Common Council will hold a public hearing on a proposed zoning change for the 42 acre site.

On Monday night the Plan Commission reviewed the concept for a proposed conservation subdivision that would have 19 single family houses on a street off Freistadt Road that would end in a cul-de-sac.

The site includes flood plain along the Milwaukee River and is east of Oak Shore Lane. The concept plan includes two stormwater detention ponds and a 12-acre park for residents.

Lots too small for Mequon

Resident John Miller questioned the zoning change that would allow a lot as small as half an acre.

"We are all aware that a half-acre lot is not up to our standards," Miller said. "Ten more houses on the river might mean 10 more piers, maybe 20 more boats. The river is quite crowded already."

Miller also worried about further pollutants in the river that would come from lawns and fertilizers used for the new housing lots.

Developer David Leszynski can build 19 houses on the site under the current single family zoning, which requires 1-acre lots, but the planned unit development zoning he is seeking would allow him to sell lots of varying sizes. Lot sizes would range from half an acre to more than 5 acres but would have an overall average of 1 acre.

Stuart Holmes questioned the wisdom of building homes in an area that floods. He has two sump pumps in his house, which is on the north side of Freistadt Road.

"We chose our house because of the views across those 42 acres," he said.

People living in the area like the undeveloped site, they said.

Patrick Marchese, a neighbor and Ozaukee County Supervisor, said he and some other neighbors supported infill development projects but asked the Plan Commission to ensure that the development would be compatible and consistent with the standards used at Ville du Parc subdivision.

Leszynski said that the 42 acres is part of a larger 156 acres that he and a partner own.

Setting aside green space

"We will be keeping a ton of open space," he said. "We are taking wildlife into account and setting aside the rest for a preserve or whatever."

Leszynski said he planned to build quality houses that would start at $500,000 with houses on lots abutting the river being priced higher.

Leszynski's brother, John, a commission member, recused himself from the discussion and vote to move the rezoning request to the council. If the council approves the rezoning at its Oct. 11 meeting, developer Leszynski would return to the Plan Commission with a more detailed preliminary plat plan for the subdivision.

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